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Batoche Historic Site

Batoche National Historic Site is located 88 kilometers northeast of the city of Saskatoon on the banks of the South Saskatchewan River.  It is the site of the largest battle between the Métis and the North West Field Force of the Canadian Militia in 1885. 
 

Louis Riel selected Batoche as the headquarters of his “Provisional Government of Saskatchewan” from where he could negotiate with the Dominion of Canada for the rights of the Métis, settlers and First Nations of the territories. 
 

Problems began in the area in 1878, when the Canadian government began surveying the traditional river lots and dividing them in the ways of the English. The Métis had long survived on the river access that each farm had, but the English way cut off many farmers from access to the river.

Métis leaders such as Gabriel Dumont, Maxime Lepuine, Moise Ouellette, Pierre Parenteau Sr. and Charles Nolin held meetings and drafted petitions to draw the government's attention to the situation. When the Canadian government failed to respond, another meeting was held in the spring of 1884 and Louis Riel was asked to speak on behalf of the people of the Northwest Territories.

 
The Battle of Batoche was fought over four days from May 9 to May 12, 1885. Less than 300 Métis and a few First Nations people led by Louis Riel and Gabriel Dumont defended Batoche from a series of rifle pits which they had dug along the edge of the bush surrounding the village.

 

The North West Field Force commanded by Major General Frederick Middleton and numbering 800, attacked the defenses directly as well as embarking on maneuvers intended to distract the Métis and First Nations away from the North-West Field Force's numerical source of strength.
 

Batoche National Historic Site of Canada is open daily from 9:00am to 5:00pm, beginning May 8 to mid-September. Hours may vary in May and September, due to school groups.

 

Annual Events

  • Aboriginal Day Celebrations. Cultural entertainment and activities
  • Canada Day. Birthday cake, entertainment and activities. Free admission
  • On s’regaroche à Batoche, Fransaskois Festival
  • Parks Day. Bird watching and nature hiking
  • Mass at Historic Church
  • Community Appreciation Day
  • Family Fun Fest. Connecting to your roots, picnic area, scavenger hunt
  • Honouring Heroes. Remembering Louis Riel, Gabriel Dumont, Métis veterans and heroes

88km Northeast of Saskatoon,
Batoche SK.
Ph: (306) 427-6227
Adults $7.80, Senior $6.55, Youth $3.90

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